NCMO benefits the Red Springs Mission Campby Emily Rojas
As North Carolina Baptists give to the North Carolina Missions Offering (NCMO), they support the missions and ministry efforts of the Red Springs Mission Camp in Robeson County. The NCMO provides the funds necessary to further efforts to impact lostness through disciple-making in Red Springs and the surrounding communities. This mission camp is one of two in North Carolina — the other is in Shelby. Larry Osborne is the director of the Red Springs Mission Camp, Osborne’s wife, Teresa, is the office manager; and Windell Hunt is the assistant director.
The Red Springs Mission Camp, a ministry of North Carolina Baptist Men, opened in 2008. The missions and ministries of the camp depend on the NCMO for support. As local churches give to the NCMO, 15 percent of their gifts are used to support the efforts of the two mission camps in North Carolina.
Volunteer groups staying at the Red Springs Mission Camp engage the surrounding communities in a variety of ways. Some of the camp’s many ministries include visiting and ministering to elderly people in the area, doing yard work, repairing homes, and even helping with housecleaning. The camp also holds prayer walks every three weeks, during which staff and volunteers pray with people they meet on the street.
Osborne said these acts of service present an opportunity to share the gospel with the people who live in Red Springs — they provide a way to establish relationships, which is essential for disciple-making. He said volunteers always pray with the people they’ve served after the work is done, and the people in the community are grateful for the love shown through their work. “They are so in disbelief that people would come out and travel and help them free of charge,” Osborne said.
Osborne said the camp’s goal is “to be a ministry that’s outside of its walls”; to engage volunteers in efforts that express God’s love beyond the walls of churches and ministry buildings and into all parts of daily life. To do this, the camp provides volunteers with opportunities to meet the specific community-based and practical needs of the people. Volunteers can reach out to the entire community by assisting with Christmas and school supply giveaways and serving free Thanksgiving dinners. The camp also recently began holding fire safety and smoke alarm training classes, and it will host its first block party later this year.
Volunteers can also get involved in projects regarding the camp’s facilities. The camp needs volunteers to build additional shower and bathroom facilities for visiting teams to use. There are also additional plans to add a conference room to the back of the existing building. Osborne said that keeping the facility updated in this way is important in creating an environment in which volunteers can prepare themselves for missions work: “We’re set up to go out in the community, serving the community. But before that ever happens, we’ve got to provide a nice place for the volunteers to feel at home,” he said.
While the camp seeks to minister to those who live in Red Springs, Osborne said that the camp’s mission work often impacts the volunteers more than the people they serve in the community. He said he has seen God work in mighty ways through the volunteers’ interactions with each other and with the people who live in Red Springs. Osborne said he enjoys seeing volunteers grow in their understanding of what mission work actually is: “They come here with one idea of what a missionary is but go home with a whole different aspect of missionary life.”
For more information about how you can support the Red Springs Mission Camp through the NCMO, please visit www.ncmissionsoffering.org. For more information about how you and your church can participate in the mission and ministry endeavors at the Red Springs Mission Camp, please visit www.baptistsonmission.org/Camps/Red-Springs-Mission-Camp.